Five Nepali dry ports to be internationalised

Kathmandu, July 30

The government has registered the Inter-governmental Agreement on Dry Ports (IADP) in the Parliament for its ratification.

As per the provisions of Nepal Treaty Act, 1990, the Minister for Industry, Commerce and Supplies Matrika Prasad Yadav registered the IADP, which Nepal had signed in 2016, in the Parliament today.

Kedar Bahadur Adhikari, secretary of commerce and supplies at MoICS, said that after the agreement is ratified by the Parliament, it will receive international recognition with its registration in the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (UNESCAP).

Adhikari further said that after the agreement is endorsed, Nepal’s dry ports will be listed in the international map and large international companies will be encouraged to establish their office in the country, thereby facilitating third-country trade.

According to him, after Nepal gets the membership of the Inter-governmental Dry Ports, the country will be able to directly receive cargo through its inland clearance depots (ICDs).

He said this will strengthen connectivity and seamless international movement of goods, facilitate increased efficiency and reduce the cost of transport and logistics as well as extend reach to inland areas and wider hinterlands.

The IADP aims to promote ‘international recognition of dry ports, facilitate investment in dry port infrastructure, improve operational efficiency and enhance the environmental sustainability of transport’.

After ratification of the agreement, five dry ports of the country, namely Bhairahawa ICD, Biratnagar ICD, Birgunj ICD, Kakarbhitta ICD and Tatopani ICD will be recognised as international dry ports of Nepal and will appear in global shipping map.

Altogether 13 countries have ratified IADP so far. After its ratification here, Nepal’s cargo will have access to dry ports of 25 countries — Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, Russia, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam.

After endorsement of the agreement, the country’s dry ports will have transport connection with more than 150 dry ports, border ports/land customs stations, integrated check posts, seaports, inland waterway terminals and airports of the aforementioned countries.

The agreement was adopted in Bangkok on May 1, 2013 by a resolution of UNESCAP and was opened for signature on November 7, 2013. It remained open for signature until December 31, 2014 and entered into force on April 23, 2016, after it was ratified by the requisite eight states.